El Paso City Council Supports UTEP Opportunity Days

The El Paso City Council proclaimed today that May 2-3, 2012, will be Opportunity Days in El Paso, Texas, to support The University of Texas at El Paso’s efforts to develop synergistic strategies between education, industry and government that will lead to happier, healthier and more robust communities.

The University was one of 12 institutions of higher education selected to be a regional partner of Opportunity Nation, a Boston-based initiative with goals of economic stimulation, social mobility and a revitalization of the American Dream.

Northeast city Rep. Carl Robinson read the proclamation that emphasized the city’s support for UTEP Opportunity Days because of the important role that education will play in the city’s economic growth and quality of life of its residents.

Howard Daudistel, Ph.D., UTEP senior executive vice president, and Richard Daniel, Ph.D., associate vice president for university advancement and special projects and a lead organizer of the two-day event, accepted the proclamation during the weekly council meeting Tuesday morning at El Paso City Hall.

Daudistel thanked the council for its support and summarized the activities that will be at The University of Texas at El Paso later this week.

He told them about the May 2 conference “Building Opportunity and Social Mobility through Collaboration: The El Paso Model,” an invitation-only summit of civic, business, nonprofit and education leaders who will discuss ways to prepare tomorrow’s workforce for the competitive, high-paying jobs that will be developed in the region to keep those graduates in El Paso to foster its economic development and raise its quality of life. The summit will kick off a three-year initiative where these concepts will be fleshed out.

During the May 3 “Pick Your Dream” event, more than 8,000 fifth- and seventh-grade students from neighboring school districts will come to campus, listen to testimonials from successful alumni and experience the wide variety of student activities in the areas of sciences, liberal arts, engineering and health sciences. The goal is for them to see themselves as college material.

“We’ve gotten to a point where what we need to do is push the envelope to the next level,” Daudistel said.